If you are a Medicare patient and you are planning on moving to another state, there are a few things you need to take care of in order to maintain your coverage in its current state by updating medicare when you move. These tasks include notifying the government of your new residence, changing Medicare Advantage or Medicare prescription drug plans, and changing Medigap plans.

While updating medicare when you move, it is of primary importance to notify Social Security of your new address. If you are currently receiving benefits, you can enter your change of address information on the Social Security website. Note that this requires creating an account and answering a few security-related questions. If you’d rather not enter your information online, you may call the Social Security Administration directly at 1-800-772-1213. Representatives will assist you from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Monday through Friday. Finally, you can visit your local Social Security office and obtain a change of address form.

Part C

If you have a Medicare Advantage plan (sometimes called Medicare Part C) or a Medicare Part D prescription drug plan, you’re probably aware of the fact that your plan coverage and costs depend on where you live. Updating medicare when you move , then, may affect your coverage. You may be eligible to switch to a new plan under a Special Enrollment Period. You should notify your current plan as soon as you decide to move. If you do so, you will be able to convert to a new plan in your new residence area one month before you move and up to two months after you move. You may also be eligible for the Special Enrollment Period if you move to a new address that remains within your current plan’s coverage area. Contact your current plan provider as soon as possible for more information.

Medigaps plans

If you have a Medigap plan (also called Medicare Supplemental insurance), you may be allowed to keep your existing policy after your move. Medigap plans are standardized across most US states, with the exception of Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Massachusetts. If you are moving to an area where medical care costs are higher than your previous residence, be aware that health insurance companies do have the right to adjust your premiums, even if you keep the same plan.

Original Medicare

If you have Original Medicare Part A or Part B, you don’t need to make any adjustments to your coverage if you decide to move. Since Medicare doesn’t have provider networks, you may choose any hospital or doctor in your new area of residence that accepts Medicare. The official Medicare website has a Physician Compare Tool that may assist you in finding new health care providers after your move. You can contact Medicare at 1-800-633-4227 if you have further questions.

by Lindsay Malzone, Lindsay Malzone is the Medicare expert for Medigap.com. She's been contributing to many well-known publications as an industry expert since 2017. Her passion is educating Medicare beneficiaries on all their supplemental Medicare options so they can make an informed decision on their healthcare coverage.